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Published: Tuesday, 10/25/2005

3 from area among those stranded in resort city

Three Toledo-area residents are among the 20,000 tourists stuck around the Mexican resort of Cancun waiting to leave after Hurricane Wilma left them stranded.

Leora Leal and her sister, Becky Insco, both of Lake Township, and niece Amy Pittman were vacationing in Cancun when the hurricane hit, said Robert Leal, Mrs. Leal's husband.

He said the three have been sheltered in a school auditorium since Thursday afternoon waiting for the storm's arrival. Since the storm's passing, they have not been allowed to return to their hotel and gather their personal items.

"They left everything behind because they were told just to take one handbag each," Mr. Leal said. "They've had the same clothes on for five days."

Mr. Leal said he heard from his wife yesterday morning, but was concerned about the looting going on in Cancun.

"I don't think enough is being done [for the tourists]," Mr. Leal said. "I've tried calling everywhere trying to get some help for them and haven't been able to find any."

Mr. Leal said the three, who have vacationed in Cancun for the last several years, said they are ready to come home.

The Mexican government sent troops and federal police into Cancun yesterday to control looting at local stores.

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